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Theodore E[manuel] Schmauk.

The year of our Lord, 1904; a survey of the world online

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And, in fact, the establishment of the republic coincided with the revolu-
tion introduced by Pius IX into the church. This revolution consists, as
you know, in the fact that the personal decisions of the Pope are invested
henceforth with the infallibility which belonged to the whole church as-
sembled in council. The religious, political, and social doctrines of the
Pope constitute so many revelations, for the Holy Ghost inspires their au-
thor. Such is the new doctrine set forth in the encyclical 'Quanta cura' and
of which the Syllabus is the applied commentary. The Syllabus, in fact,
declares war on civilization, on liberty, on democracy, on all contemporary
thought. I invite all of you who have not read it, or who have read it only
superficially, to study it attentively. Those whom the preconceived ideas
of faith do not prejudice against the suggestions of reason will see how this
initial doctrine of contemporary Catholicism renders out of the question
any durable and serious accord between church and state."

These very serious utterances on one of the most funda-
mental questions of the day, affecting every nation, including
the United States, that comes into contact with the Roman
curia, has led to a new study in Europe of the Roman church
as a temporary power. Anatole France, a celebrated member
of the French Academy, thus sets forth the Roman theory :

"The Roman Church is at once a temporal and spiritual
power. She rests her right to rule the world upon the cano-
nical evangelists, upon the tradition of the primitive church,
upon the concession of Constantine, upon the sacred cano-
nical books and the sacred decretals.

"Whether the Roman Church now possesses a territorial
domain or simply dwells in a palace, she is a state. She is a
temporal power distinguished from the Powers with which
she negotiates in that the latter have set boundaries to their
sovereignty, whereas the church can recognize no boundaries
to her sovereignty without repudiating her origin, changing
her nature, without betraying herself and contradicting her-
self. In opposition to the other Powers, which, because their
feet rest upon that which is human, recognize the. conditions
which man and nature impose upon them by subordinating
their will, their disposition, and their laws to the force of cir-
cumstance, the church must not yield any of her power, which,
as she always teaches, was given to her as a sacred bequest.
Nor should she yield rights which she professes to have re-
ceived from heaven.



44

"The very nature of this institution, as the church ex-
pounds it to us, invests her with civil and political authority
over the whole world. Because she is a spiritual power, she
is a temporal power. Because souls should be subject to her,
she undertakes to subject bodies to herself. And in fact it is
difficult to imagine a domination of the spirit without a domi-
nation of the flesh. It is true, that the church raises herself
above the things of this world. It is equally true that she em-
braces these things and permeates them. She rules the world,
but she is of the world. . . .

"The church makes it her mission to save the world, and
to this end she has prescribed certain formulas and customs,
has set forth rules of life for the union of the sexes, for food,
days of rest, feasts, and education of children, the right to
write, speak, and think. To make sure of the carrying out of
these rules — which, so far from affecting the purely spiritual
domain only, come to a great extent within the police power
of the state — the church must exercise a right of control over
the government of all nations and hence must assume a place
in the government of all peoples."

The Bishop of Seez, in a pastoral letter in August, 1904,
has strikingly defined this exalted and special mission : "The
church has inalienable rights over men as well as over So-
ciety. She holds these rights from God and no one can take
them away from her. . . . She is the. authority of God upon
earth, and this authority must be exercised with reference
to souls, which are subject to her, with reference, to bodies in
all questions that are questions of conscience, with reference
to all social questions that affect the spiritual domain.

"Every duty implies a rig"ht. As the church alone possesses
truth, she undertook the task of propagating it and of
opposing antithetical error. This task she can not fulfill with-
out supporting herself by means of temporal principles, or to
use her own language, without making use of the secular
arm. . . . The. Pope is sovereign. Kings, emperors, are
his representatives. The Pope, to employ a phrase of Pope
Innocent's, is to the emperor what the sun is to the moon." .

If this doctrine, announced so frequently within the last



45

twelve months, and practiced for centuries by Rome, be
true, is it not also true that the President, the government
and the people of America, when it comes to a crucial ques-
tion between church and state, must necessarily be estimated
by Rome as "the moon," of which she herself is "the sun?"

"The official organ of the Vatican, the Osservatore Ro-
mano, declares regarding the relations which should subsist
between church and state :

"Separation of the two perfect societies, constituted such by God, is a
monstrosity, and to this monstrosity the church can not adjust herself in
Catholic states and has to combat it." And on the attitude of the church
toward liberty and toleration, the organ of the Vatican says:

"Freedom of the press is an error condemnable and condemned. It is
contrary to sense in philosophy, and in theology a monstrosity, in the same
manner as freedom of worship and of conscience, and of thought."

"Distinguishing rationally, there emerges the acceptable, and accepted
maxim of toleration of freedom of the press, of worship, and of conscience
on the part of the church, and even invoked, as hypothesis. Toleration is
one thing, approval is another." . . .

In plain words, freedom of conscience, worship, thought,
speech and press, are an error, interdicted in Catholic coun-
tries, and tolerated, but not approved elsewhere. What the
Roman church tolerates, but does not approve, she will set her-
self at the opportune, moment to remove.

Perhaps our readers may have forgotten the remarkable
character of the terms which the state and the church entered
into, when, in 1801, the Concordat, or treaty governing the
relations of France and the Papacy, received the signatures
of Napoleon, the First Consul, and of Pope Pius VII. The
Concordat proclaims full liberty to the Catholic-Apostolic-
Roman religion in France. But the church must adapt itself
and its worship to such regulations as seem to be necessary to
the government for public order. And the so-called "Organic
Articles," which Napoleon as Consul added in 1802 when the
Concordat was made public, further emphatically declares that,
"'No bull, no breve, rescript, decree, order, nor any other mis-
sive of the Roman court, even if it concerns private persons,
may be received, printed, made public, or in any wise given
power in France without the authority of the French govern-
ment. No one, whether he called himself nuntius, legate,



4 6

vicar, or commissioner of the Apostolic See, or whether he use
any other title, can exercise any of the functions pertaining to
the Gallican Church on French soil, or elsewhere, without such
authorization." It is true that the "Organic Articles," to
which these very decided limitations belong, have never been
formally recognized by the Vatican, but have been granted
only silent tolerance. It may be remarked in passing that
these articles still retain the old national name, "Gallican
Church," presumably to show that the ideal of a national self-
existing Catholic Church for France bad not entirely disap-
peared. As to the filling of vacant bishoprics, the state
chooses them from among those priests fitted to discharge
such functions. The Pope bestows upon them the canonical
institution. The appointing power then is really the minister
of worship of the republic, and the statement has been made
that for many years this vast power has been in the hands of
a single individual in France.

One of the most important of the stipulations of the Con-
cordat, to the Roman Church, is that the French government
is to devote the sum of ten millions each year to the stipends
of the bishops and parish priests. If this should be repealed,
the French clergy, like our own American priests, would be
dependent on the voluntary contributions of their flocks, and
probably as a result, there would be a serious decline in the
amount of subscriptions annually sent by the French govern-
ment to Rome for the maintenance of the Papacy.

THIS brings us to the Papal finances. For finances have
played a much larger part in the political policy of the
Papacy than the uninitiated world at large supposes.
Only a short time ago it leaked out that the real object of the
recent visit of Cardinal Satolli to America (the object was un-
known even to the Roman episcopy and clergy), was the secur-
ing of a large sum of money for the Peter's Pence fund of the
Pope at Rome. It is stated that the amount that Satolli laid
at the feet of grateful Pius X exceeded two million francs.

This was a fine sum to add to the Vatican funds. And
yet it by no means suffices to allay the financial stringency of



47

the treasury of the one who claims to be the only Vicar of Him,
Who had not where to lay His head. The diminution of the
amount of Peter's Pence annually sent to Rome from Eng-
land, and the seizure of Rome by the Italian government, thus
removing from the Pope's coffers the wealth of the city which
had always been his principal source of revenue, has greatly
reduced the working capital of the pontiff on which he de-
pends for a sure income. When Pius IX died, the capital
of the Pope amounted to £ 1,200,000, but Leo XIII became
so exceedingly anxious to increase the capital that he was in-
duced to invest in several very risky financial enterprises, which
ended in a severe disaster in 1893, when the Holy See lost
£400,000. Leo, who was an uncommonly good representa-
tive of a close fisted business man, felt this reverse most keenly,
and after ten months of strenuous struggle, told one of his car-
dinals a few months before his death that half of the money
had been recovered. By this he meant that he had again
brought his capital up to £1,000,000, by saving interest; and
out of the offerings made directly to him in the twenty-five
years of his Pontificate, he had saved £600,000 more; so that
he really left more to his successor than he had received from
his predecessor. And yet in addition our economical pontiff
had spent no less than £2,000,000 in church buildings, restora-
tions and works of art, having lavished £280,000 alone upon
the apse and the repairs in St. John Lateran in Rome.

When, consequently, Satolli returned and laid his bag of
2,000,000 francs at the foot of the Papal chair, it was no won-
der that pious Pius X patted him approvingly on the head,
and said to him, "Good son. Thou art worthy of thy spiritual
parentage."

Yet for all this the papacy has never been able to forget
the day when the treasures of Rome herself were poured into
its lap rather than into the coffers of the Italian government.

But if the difficulties with the French Republic should
prove disastrous in the final result, there is still one way open
for the Pope. It turns out that recently the Vatican has been
cultivating a much more cordial relationship with the Italian
government, than has ever been the case before. If the Holy



4 8

Father can bring himself to forgive (at least temporarily) Italy
for the wrongs done through so many years to the Prisoner of
the Vatican, there is still six hundred thousand dollars a year
in the Italian treasury , at the Pope's disposal ; and not as a
stipend, but as the quid pro quo for the property of the Papacy
which was taken by the state in 1870.

It really looks very much as though the Pope would bring
himself to accept this hitherto despised gift from the hated Ital-
ian government. The Holy Father would certainly be in a
more independent position, and be able to maintain the pres-
tige and discipline of the Church in France much more effec-
tively, if he preferred this amount to the ten million francs
which has been furnished annually to the Gallican clergy by
the French government under the terms of the Concordat.

It is noteworthy that the pope, a few months ago, used the
influence of the Roman Church to preserve Victor Emanuel
upon his throne. It has been four years since Victor Emanuel
succeeded his father to the throne of Italy, and since that time
the legislature has never been dissolved. But when, this Fall,
the socialist leaders declared a paralyzing strike which tied up
the whole, country, simply for the purpose of giving a public
demonstration of their power, the King resolved to dissolve
the parliament and to appeal to the country by means of a gen-
eral election. It was an election for the throne itself, rather
than for the cabinet. Now, ever since the Papacy has lost its
temporal power, that is since 1870, Roman Catholics in Italy
have been forbidden by the Vatican to take part in parliamen-
tary elections. Much pressure was brought upon the last two
popes to withdraw this order, but of no avail. Pius the X has
been known as favoring the participation of Catholics in par-
liamentary elections, and while he did not revoke the prohibi-
tion issued by his predecessors as to voting, yet, as a matter
of fact, an immense Catholic vote was cast in favor of the
House of Savoy. For, instructions had been sent through
the bishops to the clergy throughout the kingdom, authoriz-
ing the faithful to go to the polls and vote against the declared
foe of the Church, that is to say against the socialists, and
consequently in favor of King Emanuel. By this move the



49

pope has not only gained a great victory over the socialists
against the Church, but he has also supported the conserva-
tive power, that is the monarchy in Italy, and thus apparently
has taken a step in the direction of reconciling the Church and
the State. It is the first time that the monarchy and the
Church have united at the polls against socialism.

By way of most striking contrast with the Papal hierarchy
the proceedings of the Congress of Freethinkers, which this
Fall held a session in Rome in the Roman College, in the face
of the Vatican, and which was largely composed of French del-
egates, was an extraordinary spectacle. Though really a
fiasco, and composed to a large extent of French delegates
who took advantage of cheap tickets provided by French rail-
way companies to visit Rome, the spectacle it presented was
picturesque. The chairman is represented as wearing the
leather cap of a motor chauffeur while presiding. Prof. Haeckel
is said to have made a speech wearing a huge felt hat. M.
Berthelot, the French Minister and intimate friend of Renan,
sent a letter to the Congress in which he advised real tolerance
of liberty of thought, whether Christian or not. This is taken
to be a rebuke and disapproval of Premier Combes' measures
for prosecuting the Catholic Associations in France.



AVERY interesting minor dispute between Roman Italy
and the antiquarians of Great Britain has been raised
by the demand of the chapter of the Ascoli Cathedral,
supported by the Italian government, that J. Pierpont Mor-
gan should restore to the Cathedral at Ascoli the cope which
disappeared from thence a few years ago and which Mr. Mor-
gan recently purchased from professional art collectors and
placed on exhibition with other of his treasures at the South
Kensington Museum, London.

The British, it seems, unanimously dispute the Italian de-
mand for restitution. Even the Roman Catholics in England
are against it. Since the cope is of English workmanship,
and a superb specimen of the Opus Anglican embroidery, fa-



5o

mous in mediaeval art history, it would be more just, it is
claimed, that the vestment remain in England. The fact that
it was presented by Pope Nicholas IV, somewhere about A.
D. 1290, to the Cathedral of his native town of Ascoli, and has
been preserved there since, does not weigh with the English
mind. The British claim that no one knows how it came into
the hands of Nicholas IV, who may have purchased it inno-
cently enough.

The incident opens a very large question with reference to
the ethics of historical property. If the claim of the Italians
is to be admitted, and the possession of art treasures and his-
torical relics is to be determined by their original title, the
museums and churches of Europe, and the public galleries of
America would perhaps be morally obliged to give up their
most precious treasures. Thus the British Museum ought
restore to the Greek government the famous Elgin marbles,
which were purchased in a legitimate way by Lord Elgin who
in turn disposed of them to the British Museum. Yet had
these marbles been left with the other sculptures at the Par-
thenon, they would have been most lamentably injured by want
of proper care. On the same principle, the Louvre at Paris
would be compelled to give back Murillo's Immaculate Con-
ception to Spain, whence it was carried off by the French Mar-
shal Soult when Joseph Bonaparte was on the Spanish throne.
The first Napoleon and his generals despoiled all public insti-
tutions and palaces of the countries through which his armies
went ; and after his downfall, they found their way through va-
rious hands by means of sale until they reached their present
destination in the palaces and museums of countries in the old
world.

Since the battle of Waterloo, the forcible appropriation of
valuable articles in wars between civilized nations has been
abandoned. But the practice still continues in conflicts with
Asiatic and African nations. Windsor Castle is said to be full
of priceless porcelains, silks, enamels, etc., taken in this man-
ner. The splendid treasures of King Theban of Burmah ; the
personal valuables of the two kings of Ashanti ; the crown of
Emperor Theodore of Abyssinia, are at'the South Kensington



5i

Museum. Many splendid jeweled ornaments taken from the
Indian Empire, are preserved at Windsor Castle. The Water-
loo gallery of Windsor Castle contains gold and silver, much
of which was used for sacramental purposes in past ages by
the Roman Catholic Church ; and was taken in the days of
the Spanish Armada, when the British ships plundered and
sacked the churches of the Spanish main. Emperor William
only four years ago received as a portion of the plunder from
Peking a number of very interesting astronomical instruments
several hundred years old ; and these are now one of the attrac-
tions at Potsdam. The churches of Europe themselves con-
tain a great many relics and memorials which were undoubt-
edly removed by violence or in an unlawful manner from the
place of their original ownership. If the question respecting
original ownership were carried consistently to its deepest
source, it would at last reach the basis of all permanent owner-
ship, viz., territorial possession ; and the right, for instance, of
Americans to their property, which originally had been taken
from the Indians, might be disputed on ethical grounds ;
while the colonial possessions of Italy, Germany, France, Rus-
sia, Spain and Great Britain, would hang trembling in the bal-
ance. In our opinion, while possession is not nine-tenths of
the moral law, and twenty years possession is not sufficient on
moral grounds to establish legitimate ownership ; yet, if any
generation of men finds the actual custody of alien property
to be actually vested in its hands, other questions, in addition
to that of original title, enter into the consideration of the
problem. Mr. Roosevelt puts things right when he somewhere
declares that the justification for any other than original owner-
ship must ultimately rest chiefly on the better preservation and
usefulness with which the custodians in fact are able to surround
a property, and we may add, to make it serve its highest pur-
pose. Grounds such as these would be totally unlawful if de-
clared operative in the seizure of property ; but we may apply
them, after long periods of historical interruption, to the re-
tention of property. The questions as to whether Lutheran-
ism has morally forfeited title to the Old Swedes' Church at
Wicaco; whether old German foundations can be claimed by



52

English descendants ; whether the endowments made for an
orthodox institution can be) morally used by incumbents who no
longer teach in accord with the old foundations, are instances,
speaking legally, of the principles that underlie a proper dis-
position of Mr. Morgan's embroidered mediaeval cope. Since
writing the above, it has been announced that Mr. Mor-
gan has concluded to present the cope to Italy. This is good
sense. It first of all teaches doctrinaires and theorists that
possession legally belongs to Mr. Morgan, and that if he parts
with it, it is not as a matter of legal right, but as a gift. Sec-
ond, Great Britain's only claim is that the cope is "of English
workmanship." The British cannot point out any original
owner, nor any chain of title. They would not be able to
prove that the "English workmanship" had not been done on
Italian soil, or purchased (as German paramenta to-day are
purchased in America) with Italian money. On the other
hand Italy can point to a definite claimant, the Chapter of
Ascoli, and to an uninterrupted chain of possession and safe
custodianship through six centuries. Many vague and sweep-
ing ecclesiastical and political claims of the British and of other
people would vanish under the application of a little business
sense.

Here, for instance, is the Roman archbishop of Chicago,
who a year ago, startled the country with his dictum : "The
new world was discovered by the Catholics and the Cross was
planted in the name of the Church. We cannot get it out of
our heads that Catholics will yet claim the new world again."
If their second rule is to be as corrupt as their first was, Amer-
ica may well pray that the day desired by the Bishop be post-
poned. Yet the Bishop declared that the national constitu-
tion has been made more secure by the increase of Catholicism
in this country, and he pleads for the establishment of a subsidi-
ary system of public schools "for the benefit of the minority, and
which should be paid for by the state, but controlled by the
Church." He declared that the rule requiring public school
teachers to have normal school training is tyranny. The fun-
damental error of the age, said he, is liberalism. Liberalism
delegates to the state all rights, and this where the state and



53

church conflict. "The education of the child should rest with
the church and not with the state."

The archbishop is a Canadian by birth, 50 years of age,
and he handles this vital question of the day very much as a
man with a keen insight, but narrow outlook, would be prompt-
ed to do. It is entirely true that the state has not all right
to the child,, but it is also true that the state has some right,
that is a secular right over the child. It is not true that Pro-
testants are undertaking through the present public school sys-
tem to prevent the Catholic children from becoming firmly
cemented to their church, or that the public school system is
attempting to prevent the growth of the Church ; but it is true
that Protestants are opposed to the appropriation of public mo-
neys for the teaching of religion. It is true that the state
should offer an education to the minority as well as the ma-
jority ; but it is not true that the Roman Catholic minority is
the only minority ; and that the minority would be satisfac-
torily provided for if Romanism had its way and its wants were
supplied.

That sound constitutional Americanism is not always fur-
thered by the Roman Church is evident from a number of facts.
Last March ., for instance, a very curious suit was brought into
the civil Tribunal of Rome against the Supreme head of the
Jesuit Order, Lodovico Martin. It is an action attempting to
recover expenses said to have been incurred for services ren-
dered in destroying the separatist movement of the Roman
Catholics in the United States under the alleged leadership of
Archbishop Ireland and the Paulist fathers. The plaintiff
avers that the work he did was undertaken with the approval


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Online LibraryTheodore E[manuel] SchmaukThe year of our Lord, 1904; a survey of the world → online text (page 5 of 11)